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World Cup: Netherlands Preview

Netherlands has a great offense and if they can play decent defense they will be tough to beat in group play.

The Netherlands is in Group E with Denmark, Cameroon, and Japan.
Bovada has Netherlands at +1200 to win the World Cup and at -175 to win Group E.

The Netherlands is not in the toughest group and they have a great offense, but Cameroon and Japan are the highest ranked teams in their respective continents and Denmark looked great in qualifying winning their group ahead of Portugal and Sweden.

The Dutch have played in eights World Cups and they were runner up twice (1974, 1978) and came in third place in 1998.

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The Netherlands had no problem qualifying for South Africa and even though they were not in a very tough group, along with Scotland, Iceland, and Macedonia, they were one of only five teams in European qualifying that went undefeated in group play.

The strength of the Dutch is their offense, as they have one of the most dynamic and high scoring ones in the tournament. Arsenal’s Robin van Persie and Bayern Munich’s Arjen Robben are a couple of world class strikers and Holland has one of the best midfielders in the world in Inter Milan’s Wesley Sneijder. The Dutch will be tough to stop if their offense is clicking.

While the Dutch have a great offense their main weakness is their defense. They tend to be left alone often since the midfielders always push forward to help the attack. The Netherlands really has to be wary of the counter-attack.

It is still up in the air if G Edwin van der Sar and striker Ruud van Nistelrooy will be on the squad, as even though they are a little long in the tooth they are still great players.

Head coach Bert van Marwijk has given the Dutch some solid results and if he can get them to, at least, the quarterfinals his World Cup campaign may be seen as a success.

The Dutch will be favored in all of their group matches, but when they face Cameroon and Denmark they will be facing goalies that both play for top-flight clubs. If they can win their first match against Denmark they will be in the driver’s seat in group play.

Netherlands World Cup Schedule

6/14/2010 Netherlands vs. Denmark
6/19/2010 Netherlands vs. Japan
6/24/2010 Cameroon vs. Netherlands